|Rev To The Limit|
REV TO THE LIMIT
"The Smokey Burnout function allows the driver to indulge in a degree of rear wheel spin while the car is moving at low speeds."
One of the biggest changes brought along by the fifth generation of the M3 / M4 is a return to a straight-six engine. It won't be the same statespheric rev monster of old due to two big fat turbochargers, but BMW made up for it with a bunch more horsepower and loads more torque. The new M3/M4 has 425hp from 5,500rpm to 7,300rpm and 406 lb-ft torque between 1,850rpm and 5,500rpm, that will really help low end urgency.
It is nice to see that BMW has managed to lighten the load too, with a 22 lbs lighter engine as well as the increased use of lightweight materials, such as carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) and aluminum for a number of chassis and body components. Both models feature a carbon roof, which is a first for the sedan.
As always with the M cars, the car is rear wheel drive and comes standard with a six-speed manual gearbox. BMW have added the cool "throttle blipping" feature that improves smoothness of gear changes, something we first saw a few years back on a lower priced car. Cool feature. For lazy drivers (yes, I said it) you can opt for the seven-speed dual-clutch M DCT that comes with paddle shifters and a launch control function.
Twin-turbo inline-six makes 425 turbocharged horsepower from 5500 rpm all the way up to 7300 rpm. We like.
Acceleration times have tumbled versus the outgoing model, with 0 to 60mph in 4.1 seconds with the standard 6-speed manual and 3.9 seconds with the optional 7-speed DCT. Top speed is limited in both cases to 250km/h (155mph) in standard trim, and 280km/h (174mph) with the optionally available M Driver’s Package.
North American fuel economy figures haven't been published yet, but on the European driving cycle, BMW says that both coupe and sedan return a combine fuel consumption of 8.8 lt/100km (equal to 26.7mpg US and 32.1mpg UK) with the manual, and 8.3lt/100km (equal to 28.3mph US and 34.0mpg UK) with the DCT.
The new six-speed manual features an automatic throttle blip setting to rev-match downshifts.
Personally, we'd like to see the M3/M4 be a little more aggressive in the styling department, but beggars can't be choosers. The cars are aggressive compared to a base 3 series, but it is kind of subdued. BMW has been pretty consistent in how they style the M3/M4 and don't go overboard.
Both cars have 18-inch lightweight aluminum wheels in a staggered setup with 19-inch rims offered optionally.
Inside, you'll meet the typical M-dressed interior with carbon fiber elements, body hugging sports seats and unique driver controls. It is not Audi level interior, but perfect for a sports car. There is also some cool new age tech, with an app that lets drivers to analyze their personal driving style all through their smart phone.
2015 M3/M4 Photo Gallery
2015 M3/M4 Videos